Fully vaccinated travellers arriving in India from countries with which New Delhi has an arrangement for mutual acceptance of recognised Covid-19 vaccines will not need to undergo home quarantine and testing from October 25, the health ministry said in a guideline issued on Wednesday.

However, the travellers will need to produce a negative report of RT-PCR test conducted within 72 hours before boarding. They also need to be fully vaccinated at least 15 days before arriving in India.

India has signed agreements for mutual recognition of nationally or World Health Organization-recognised Covid-19 vaccines with 11 countries, reported PTI. These are the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Nepal, Belarus, Lebanon, Belgium, Armenia, Ukraine, Hungary and Serbia.

Countries with which India does not have a reciprocal arrangement on vaccines, but exempt fully-inoculated Indians from restrictions will also not need to quarantine.

Both these group of countries fall under the Category A in the health ministry’s guidleines.

If travellers from the Category A countries are partially or not vaccinated at all, they need to get tested for coronavirus on arrival in India, the guidelines said. They will be allowed to leave the airport after the test, but will have to quarantine for seven days and then take another coronavirus test on the eighth day of their arrival.

Guidelines for foreign travellers to India. (Source: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare)

The travellers from countries with which India does not have any reciprocal agreement will need to undergo quarantine and testing on arrival even if they are fully vaccinated.

The ministry also released a list of countries categorised as “at risk”. Those travelling from these countries will also have to get tested and undergo quarantine.

However, if a country features on both the Category A list and the “at risk” list, then fully vaccinated travellers from those nations will not need to go into quarantine. The United Kingdom is on both the lists.

Other countries which have been categorised as “at risk” are South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand Zimbabwe and countries in Europe.

The ministry’s guidelines also listed protocols that the international travellers as well as airlines have to comply with. The passengers will need to submit a self-declaration form before their travel.

Airports will need to conduct thermal screening and airlines can allow only those passengers to board flights who have submitted their self declaration form and uploaded a negative RT-PCR test.

India recorded 14,623 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday morning, which took the total number of cases in the country to 3,41,08,996 since the pandemic began in January last year. The number of new cases was 11.98% higher than Tuesday’s count of 13,058.

India’s toll rose to 4,52,651 as it recorded 197 more deaths.